Wednesday, February 07, 2007

It depends on how you define that

About a month ago, I started playing World of Warcraft. A lot. I never thought I'd get this into a video game, but it happened. My mom worries that I'm obsessed. Steve says I'm addicted. Well, let's see. Merriam-Webster offers the following definitions:

: a pursuit outside one's regular occupation engaged in especially for relaxation

This one sounds about right. It's certainly outside my regular occupation (taking care of the family and home) and it is my form of relaxation. When I get some free time, I hop on the computer and go kill a few murlocs or spend some time mining so I can get my level in jewel crafting up. Of course, it's not always relaxing. I'll admit that I get a little tense when I'm in a difficult area fighting higher-level monsters. Even so. It is my get-away-from-the-real-world retreat, so that makes it relaxing.

1 : the quality or state of being addicted
2 : compulsive need for and use of a habit-forming substance (as heroin, nicotine, or alcohol) characterized by tolerance and by well-defined physiological symptoms upon withdrawal; broadly : persistent compulsive use of a substance known by the user to be harmful

Now, this is where I think we start to get a little out of hand. Compulsive? Habit-forming? Well, okay, habit-forming I can see but compulsive is going way overboard. And this game is certainly not known by this user to be harmful. Oh, well, there was that one person that died because they played it compulsively for three days, but that won't happen to me!

1 : a persistent disturbing preoccupation with an often unreasonable idea or feeling; broadly : compelling motivation
2 : something that causes an obsession

Nope. Uh-uh. No way. I don't think you could say I'm preoccupied with WoW. Just occupied. Big difference. BIG. Compelling motivation? Well, I am motivated to level, but not necessarily compelled to.

All in all, I would say WoW is just a harmless, little hobby. A take-me-away-from-the-real-world place into which I escape from time to time. And, really, don't we all have these little escapes? Maybe yours is losing yourself in a good book. Maybe it's scrapbooking. They're all escapes in a way. And what's wrong with that?

Plus, it has given me an insight into the boys' heads. They both play. And they both like to tell me what they've accomplished. But now, instead of just smiling and nodding absently, when Levi tells me he's looking for a Mithril vein to mine as he's trying to get his skill in engineering up to 250 so that he can craft a Gnomish Shrink Ray, I understand what he's saying.

So, I'll freely admit that the World of Warcraft has become a favorite hobby of mine recently. To call it an obsession is definitely inaccurate. An addiction? I suppose I can see where some people might think so, but really ...

I can quit any time I want to.


Post a Comment

<< Home